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[352] towering form literally caused his pro-slavery opponents to “hide their diminished heads.” He is a very good speaker, but not an orator: his manner is dignified, sincere, and conciliating, and his language without pretence. But he has hardly decision, energy, and boldness enough for a leader. His benevolent desires for the emancipation of the colonial slaves led him to accede to a sordid compromise with the planters, and he advocated the proposition to remunerate these enemies of the human race, and to buy up wholesale robbery and oppression, not on the ground of justice but of expediency. This was done in opposition to the remonstrances of the great body of English abolitionists, and it furnishes a dangerous precedent in the overthrow of established iniquity and crime throughout the world. The results of the bargain do not [January, 1836] reach Mr. Buxton's anticipations. . . . Still, aside from this false step, Mr. Buxton deserves universal admiration and gratitude for his long-continued, able and disinterested efforts, amidst severe ridicule and malignant opposition, to break every yoke and set the oppressed free.

The prevailing excitement over West India 1 emancipation was unfavorable to the project of obtaining aid for the Manual Labor School; and by the advice of his English friends, Mr. Garrison practically put aside the leading object of his mission. There remained the exposure of Cresson, who, chancing to be in London, was disagreeably surprised by the tender of the following challenge:

To Mr. Elliott Cresson, agent of the American Colonization Society:

Sir—I affirm that the American Colonization Society, of2 which you are an Agent, is utterly corrupt and proscriptive in its principles; that its tendency is to embarrass the freedom and diminish the happiness of the colored population of the United States; and, consequently, that you are abusing the confidence and generosity of the philanthropists of Great Britain. As an American citizen, and the accredited Agent of the NewEng-land Anti-Slavery Society, I invite you to meet me in public debate in this city, to discuss the following Propositions:

1. The American Colonization Society was conceived, perfected, and is principally managed, by those who retain a portion of their own countrymen as slaves and property.

1 Lib. 3.139, and 2d Ann. Report N. E. A. S. S., p. 48.

2 2d Ann. Report N. E. A. S. S., p. 36.

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